Why does Cambrian College have a Teaching and Learning Innovation Hub?
The Teaching and Learning Innovation Hub (“The Hub”) is a product of Cambrian College’s current Strategic Plan. One of the goals of the Strategic plan is to “CHAMPION INNOVATION by advancing new and creative approaches that transform the learning experience.”
One of the strategies to achieve this goal was to “foster an organizational culture of innovation” and part of that strategy was to “establish a teaching and learning innovation hub that supports exploration, experimentation, and the creation of enhanced learning experiences” at Cambrian.
Development of the Hub
The Hub has, in many ways, has been developing slowly for years taking a variety of forms.
Finally, in 2014, the College hired eHanlis, a leading education technology company, “to better inform future decisions about the adoption and support of educational technologies” at Cambrian. Their recommendation was to establish a “’Learning and Technology Resources Centre’ […] to lead, coordinate, and support learning technology resources, processes, and innovation activities.”
In 2015, the College hired its first instructional designer and realigned IT and eDome staff together to begin the process of building this support network for teaching and learning and the College.
The Strategic Plan Working Group that was established to advise on the structure of the Hub finalized its report this January. We have been working to operationalize this report since that time.
In the development of their report, the Strat Plan Working Group reached out to faculty through surveys and focus groups, along with researching other teaching and learning centres across the province.
The report contains a number of recommendations, including a focus on four pillars of activity: faculty development, curriculum and instructional design, educational technologies, and exploration and innovation. As it grows and evolves, the Hub will continue to build capacity in the College for the design and delivery of academic programming so that we provide the best learning experiences we can for our students.
Who has Access to the Hub?
The Hub is a workspace reserved for:
- Faculty and staff who support teaching and learning
- Safe, collegial, and collaborative work
- Developing knowledge and skills
- Learning from the expertise of others
- Building communities of practice
The Hub provides the following services:
- Moodle and educational technology training and support
- Curriculum development and pedagogical support
- Instructional design services and online learning support
- Video recording, editing, and multimedia services and support
Services must fall within our scope:
- Teaching and learning
- Priority placed on program-related courses and learning objects
In November 2018, the Hub garnered its first-ever award from eCampusOntario for the development and delivery of an Open Day event that took place May 31, 2018. The purpose of the event was to provide a day-long exploration of open educational resources (OER) and their potential use as part of Cambrian College teaching success. The award was received as part of eCampusOntario’s annual fall event, the Technology Enabled Seminar and Showcase held in Toronto.
The Hub was selected in December 2018 as the Lougheed Teaching and Learning Centre’s choice for the Leadership in Northern Education Award. The Lougheed Centre is located on the campus of Laurentian University at Huntington University. The following quote from the Centre’s press release highlights the importance of the award in our region.
“This award recognizes leadership in education in Northeastern Ontario,” said Dr. Lorraine Mercer, Director, Lougheed Teaching and Learning Centre. “This is the first year a team has been selected, and the staff at the Teaching & Learning Innovation Hub at Cambrian College have demonstrated themselves as leaders in their approach to supporting and mentoring faculty. Using innovative strategies, they are enhancing teaching and learning experiences for faculty, who in turn are implementing innovative approaches in their own classrooms.”
In June 2018, two course projects created as a partnership between the Hub and faculty members were selected for awards by the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE). Laura Killam, Jeff Tranchemontagne, and Sarah Wendorf were honoured with the Excellence and Innovation in Instructional Design award for their work on nursing simulations, and Serge Levesque, Jeff Tranchemontagne, and a variety of Hub team members were selected for the Excellence and Innovation in the Integration of Technology award for their work creating QR codes for lab equipment. These QR codes and the resources that were linked to them provided students with on-demand demonstrations of proper equipment safety and use.
Local and national recognition of the successful, student-focused work that faculty members and the Hub were creating in 2018-2019 was an indicator of the College’s momentum as a post-secondary leader in teaching and learning innovation.